COVID-19 Business Resources

Small Business Resources

Rogers Park Business Alliance is proud of the caring, work ethic, dedication and resiliency of the West Ridge community. We firmly believe that, together, we will meet the challenge that we are all faced with today and going forward.

You can view our growing list of West Ridge businesses that are open and/or receiving donations. You can also check out the Chicagoland Dining at a Distance list.

Financial Assistance


  • Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL): The Small Business Administration (SBA) has re-opened applications to ALL qualifying small businesses. Find the application and further information here. Applicants who submitted their applications previously continue to be processed. Disaster Customer Service Center at (800) 659-2955 is the primary point of contact for EIDL questions. If your application was denied, you may request reconsideration via email to If you are eligible for the Targeted EIDL Advance, SBA will contact you via email with instructions.
  • Employee Retention Credit: The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service launched the Employee Retention Credit, designed to encourage businesses to keep employees on their payroll. The refundable tax credit is 50% of up to $10,000 in wages paid by an eligible employer whose business has been financially impacted by COVID-19. Information here.
  • Express Bridge Loan Pilot Program: The SBA Express lenders provide expedited financing to small businesses located in declared disaster areas. Express Bridge loans are intended to be interim loans. Businesses use these funds for disaster-related purposes while they apply for and await long-term financing. Information here.
  • Paycheck Protection Program (PPP): PPP provides loans to help businesses keep their workforce employed during the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis. Contact your bank, a Community Development Financial Institution (CDFI) or other participating lending organization to apply. PPP applications are available at participating lenders. Not all lenders participate in PPP. You may be required to become a customer of a lending institution to apply for PPP. The deadline to apply for PPP Round 2 is May 31, 2021. More information here.
    ○  The PPP Loan Forgiveness Process has changed substantially. Please confer with your lender and accountant to be sure you follow the process properly.
  • Restaurant Revitalization Fund: The American Rescue Plan Act established Restaurant Revitalization Fund (RRF) a tax-free federal grant program that will be administered by the U. S. Small Business Administration. The grant program is not accepting applications at this time – it is expected to launch on May 3, 2021. Note that a business may not apply for both the RRF and Shuttered Venue Operators Grant. If a business received a Payroll Protection Program Loan (PPP), the amount of the loan will be deducted from the RRF award should a business receive an award. This post will be updated as more information becomes available. More information here.
  • Shuttered Venue Operators Grant (SVOG): the U.S. Small Business Administration’s (SBA) SVOG application portal is now open. Potential applicants must have DUNS number and be registered in the federal government’s System for Award Management (SAM) as this is required for an applicant to receive the grant and should reference the preliminary application checklist and eligibility requirements.
    • The SVOG program was established by the Economic Aid to Hard-Hit Small Businesses, Nonprofits, and Venues Act, signed into law on December 27, 2020. The program includes $15 billion in grants to shuttered venues, to be administered by the SBA’s Office of Disaster Assistance. Check for updates here.
  • Illinois Small Business COVID-19 Relief Program: The State of Illinois Treasurer is offering loans to small businesses through banks. Information about the program can be found here. Banks participating in this program are listed here.
  • CIBC Entrepreneur Loan Program: The program supports startup or early-stage small businesses that have completed a CIBC-approved entrepreneur training program with important working capital. More information here.


  • Illinois Small Business COVID-19 Relief Program: The State of Illinois Treasurer is offering loans to small businesses through banks. Information about the program can be found here. Banks participating in this program are listed here.
West Ridge
  • Chicago Restaurant Workers Relief Fund: The Southern Smoke Foundation created this grant fund to help Chicago restaurant, bar and coffee shop workers who are experiencing hardship from the COVID-19 crisis. The fund provides emergency relief grants based on need. More information here.
  • DishRoulette Kitchen 2 Kitchen Grant: $1,000 grant for minority-owned restaurants in the Chicagoland area. For more information visit here. Applications can be made in English or Spanish. Open to undocumented business owners. Rounds close at the end of each month at 11:59 p.m. If you are not selected for the grant, then your application is automatically rolled over for the next month of grant funding.
  • Emergency Capital Access Program (ECAP)Ford Motor Company Fund and the Chicago Urban League launched the ECAP to provide small grants, technical assistance and advisory services to Black-owned small businesses that have been negatively affected by COVID-19. The League’s Center for Entrepreneurship & Innovation will deliver the program and expects to provide grants up to $4,000 to about 25 businesses. Apply here.
  • I Fund Women Grants (multiple): IFundWomen is the go-to funding marketplace for women-owned businesses and the people who want to support them with access to capital, coaching, and connections. They have a wide variety of grants available to their members, from their monthly “pay-it-forward” grants to those from their generous partners like Adidas, Unilever, Visa, Barbara Corcoran & Systane, GingerBread Capital and more. For more information click here.
  • Illinois Restaurant Association Educational Scholarship & Grant Application: One-time grants of $500 available for employees of restaurants. Apply here.
  • Local Initiatives Support Corporation: LISC is one of the country’s largest social enterprises supporting projects and programs to revitalize communities and bring greater economic opportunity to residents. They created the Small Business Rescue Fund in partnership with State Farm. The grant provides low-interest loans from $75,000 to $500,000 to minority- and women-owned businesses and nonprofits in vulnerable communities. Learn more here.


West Ridge

  • West Ridge Chamber of Commerce: They provide technical assistance to businesses, including workshops, classes, marketing and events. More information here.


  • Be Safe Certification: If you want to ensure that your business meets or exceeds requirements to reopen during the different phases and help prevent the spread of COVID-19, the City of Chicago has created the “Be Safe” self-certification. If you are interested take the survey here.
  • Business Affairs and Consumer Protection (BACP): Has put together an FAQ document with answers to the many questions facing restaurants and bars.
    • Resources for businesses, consumers and employees, here.
    • Consumer fraud hotline has resources, especially for any COVID-19 related consumer fraud. Learn more here.
    • Guide for essential businesses operating during COVID 19. These steps must be taken to protect all workers, here.
  • ChiBizHub: Provides access to local resources, access to tools that can help businesses grow, and access to expert guidance. You can find their small business portal, here.
  • Chicago Be Safe Reopening Framework: Reopening Business Portal – Aligned with the State of Illinois but tailored to Chicago’s context, these guidelines advise employers and residents of Chicago on how to cautiously exit from shelter-in-place while continuing to prioritize the health of our most vulnerable residents. Please reference the materials on this page to help cautiously guide your businesses and employees during the reopening phases.
  • Chicago Bilingual Landlord Association/Spanish Coalition for Housing: They provide assistance to both commercial and residential property owners. Information here.
  • Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund: In collaboration with the City of Chicago, The Chicago Community Trust and United Way of Metro Chicago launched the Chicago Community COVID-19 Response Fund to unite the funds raised by Chicago’s philanthropies, corporations and individuals to be disbursed to nonprofit organizations across the region. Nonprofits who receive funds from the Response Fund will help provide access to emergency food and basic supplies, rent and mortgage assistance, utility assistance, direct financial assistance for household supplies, and nonprofit safety and operations assistance. Information here.
  • Chicago COVID Resource Finder: This website is maintained by City Bureau, a nonprofit, nonpartisan journalism lab based on the South Side of Chicago. The website was created to help people access updated, verified information for Chicago and Cook County during the coronavirus pandemic. Visit here.
  • Chicago Department of Public Health: DPH created the Guidance for Business and Employers to help prevent exposures to all acute respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19. The Guidance also provides planning considerations if there are more widespread, community outbreaks of COVID-19. Find Guidance, here.
  • Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce: The Chamber curates events, programming and custom introductions that connect entrepreneurs to the largest network of business and civic leaders they won’t find anywhere else. The Chamber lobbies and ensures businesses have a seat at the table to protect and create pro-business policies. Their resource page is here.
    • On June 17, they laid out a vision and guidelines for reopening Chicagoland’s economy. An initiative of the Chamber’s COVID-19 Economic Recovery Task Force. Read the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Report here.
  • Chicago – Cocktails To-Go: Cocktails to-go are now legal in Chicago. Under the new legislation, which passed City Council. Establishments with a Tavern or Consumption on Premises-Incidental Activity license may for the first time sell pre-mixed cocktails to-go. Based on the provisions of the State law, there are strict regulations in place to ensure safety and responsibility. Any alcohol sold to-go, including pre-mixed cocktails, cannot be consumed in the public way. Click here for more information.
  • Chicago Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights: Formerly called the Community Law Project, offers pro bono legal services and created a resource page to help businesses and nonprofits during the COVID-19 crisis. Learn more here.
  • Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky created a summary for the Coronaviurs Aid, Relief, And Economic Security (CARES) Act. You can read it here.
  • Department of Cultural Affairs and Special Events: Visit their page to find resources for the artists’ community, under their COVID-19 Arts Community Resources, here.
  • Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Market: The City of Chicago created an online platform that will allow small-business owners in Chicagoland to connect directly with local suppliers to purchase a limited assortment of PPE to use when preparing to reopen. Gain access to fair-market prices from suppliers in the nearby community, avoiding price gouging. More information here.


  • Illinois Department of Commerce Essential Businesses & Operations FAQ: This FAQ provides information on what is considered an essential business and how it should operate. Read here.
  • Illinois Department of Employment Securities (IDES): The new federal Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program provides benefits for many individuals who have been determined ineligible for state unemployment benefits, including self-employed workers and 1099 tax filers. Read more here. FAQ for unemployment questions here.
  • Illinois Department of Revenue (IDOR) Taxpayer Information: Created resources for taxpayers to use while their offices are closed, here.
    • Qualified taxpayers will not be charged penalties or interest on late payments for Sales Tax liabilities reported on Form ST-1, Sales and Use Tax and E911 Surcharge Return, that are due for the February, March, and April 2020 reporting periods. More information here.
    • The City of Chicago will defer tax payment due dates to June 1 for businesses. The extension of tax payment remittance provides relief for business and those hit hardest by COVID-19. More information here.
  • Illinois Liquor Control Commission (ILCC): Ensures that licensees comply with the provisions of the Illinois Liquor Control Act of 1934 and its Rules and Regulations.
    • Liquor licenses expire on the last day of each month. Due to the hardships on liquor license holders as a result of the COVID-19 virus outbreak, state law has automatically extended the renewal dates of State liquor licenses and deferred the collection of license renewal fees in the following manner:
      Liquor License Renewals
      1. All licenses are automatically extended through December 31, 2020.
      2. No renewal fees or late fees will be charged until December 31, 2020 (Renewal will be charged if
      you renew before December 31, 2020).
  • Illinois Restaurant Association: Protects, promotes, educates and improves the restaurant industry in Illinois. Find their COVID-19 resource page here.
  • Restore Illinois: This five-phased plan will reopen our state, guided by health metrics and with distinct business, education, and recreation activities characterizing each phase. This is an initial framework that will likely be updated as research and science develop and as the potential for treatments or vaccines is realized. The plan is based upon regional healthcare availability, and it recognizes the distinct impact COVID-19 has had on different regions of our state as well as regional variations in hospital capacity. The Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) has 11 Emergency Medical Services Regions that have traditionally guided its statewide public health work and will continue to inform this reopening plan. You can read the plan here.
    • Find an FAQ with information on the Stay at Home Order here.
    • On July 15th, Governor Pritzker announced a new mitigation plan to prevent the resurgence of COVID-19 in Illinois as the State surpasses two million tests. Read the plan here.
    • The Governor’s website can be found here.
  • Small Business Advocacy Council (SBAC): The SBAC is a non-partisan, member-driven organization that promotes the success of small businesses through political advocacy, support services and educational programs. More information here.
  • State of Illinois: This website provides the latest news releases related to COVID-19, video archives of press conferences and tips from leading experts to keep you and your family safe. Learn more here.


  • CARES Act Summary: Congresswoman Jan Schakowsky created a summary for the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, And Economic Security (CARES) Act. You can read it here.
  • CARES Act Small Business Owner’s Guide: The guide provides information about the major programs and initiatives that will soon be available from the Small Business Administration (SBA) to address these needs, as well as some additional tax provisions that are outside the scope of SBA. You can find the guide here.
  • Center for Disease Control: The CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same. The CDC is one of the major operating components of the Department of Health and Human Services.
    • Stop the spread of disease PDF here.
    • COVID-19 updates and resources here.
  • ComEd: To help families and communities recover from economic challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic, ComEd is offering a comprehensive customer support package. Learn more here.
  • Federal Trade Commission: The Commission has created a page to help avoid COVID-19 related fraud. Learn more here.
  • GoFundMe: This website has relevant information to assist you in setting up a GoFundMe campaign to help raise money for your businesses. More information here.
  • Goldman Sachs: Created the US Small Business Resource Center. You can find resources here.
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA): OSHA ensures safe and healthful working conditions for working individuals by setting and enforcing standards and by providing training, outreach, education and assistance. OSHA is part of the United States Department of Labor. You can read the Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for COVID-19 here.
  • Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA): PUA was launched on May 11, 2020. The new federal PUA program will provide 39 weeks of benefits for individuals who have been determined ineligible for state unemployment benefits, including self-employed workers and independent contractors affected by COVID-19. Learn more here.
    • Individuals can file a claim for PUA only after they have applied for regular unemployment insurance benefits and have been denied. File for regular unemployment benefits here.
  • Small Business Administration (SBA): The SBA is the only cabinet-level federal agency fully dedicated to small business and provides counseling, capital and contracting expertise as the nation’s only go-to resource and voice for small businesses. Learn more here.
  • Small Business Borrowers´Bill or Rights: Learn your rights before applying for a loan to avoid predatory lenders. Learn more here.

Marketing Tips

Share your specials, your hours of operations, your delivery and shipping alternatives here. Anything that you are doing to promote your business. We will share it on the OnDevon social media accounts, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter.

Announcements / Listings / Services

  • Let customers know if you are offering delivery and curbside pick up.
  • Announce on your website and social media accounts if you are closing or remaining open.

Donations / Funders

  • Rogers Park Food Not Bombs is looking for donations of food that restaurants perhaps might not be able to use. Fill out form here.
  • Submit your fundraiser to Chicago Service Relief directory here. You can also find a business to support.

Gift Cards

  • Businesses can set up an account with Square to create eGift Cards that can be sold online. Every business receives their own links that can be shared on social media and websites. Click here to sign up.
  • Yiftee can provide gift cards to sell on Facebook. Info here.
  • If you need help setting up your gift card contact Cindy at

List your business services for free (delivery, curbside, take out, etc.)

  • Add your restaurant/pub to the Dining at a Distance list for customers to find out if you are open and offering pickup, delivery or curbside service. Here.
  • Send your restaurant information to Chicago Tribune to be included in their list here.

For more information call 773-508-5885 or email us at